What is probate and should I take steps to avoid it?

I speak often on estate planning, the traps associated with it, and the misinformation that runs rampant in today’s society.   It never ceases to amaze me that during my workshops the thing people fear most is probate, yet they often can’t explain what it is.  

The best description I’ve ever heard of Probate is that it is a lawsuit against yourself, brought by the person you love the most, for the benefit of  your creditors.  That little zinger is just one of the many “half-jokes” that come out of my mouth at my workshops, but as with all my “half-jokes” the point is valid. The probate serves the interests of the government and your creditors. Is it the worst thing in the world? No.  Is it the best way to go?  Far from it.  

There are numerous ways to avoid probate, From Transfer On Death Instruments (TOD’s) to lifetime gifting, to living trusts, but they are NOT all created equal.  What’s more, it is difficult to know what information you can trust.  That’s why we base our entire firm’s process on educating our clients so they can make informed decisions about how best to reach their planning goals.  To that point, another one of my favorite lines is that our workshops are designed to teach you what you don’t even know you don’t know about the worlds of Elder Law, Estate Planning, and asset protection!  

To learn exactly what you “don’t even know you don’t know,” call us at (315) 422-6666.  We promise that you’ll enjoy the experience and that you’ll leave with a lot more knowledge than you arrived with. Remember, we keep you in control of your life, so you can leave your legacy, and have the peace of mind essential to allowing you to live your life to the fullest.  We hope to see you soon!